Filing an Appeal When Your Social Security Disability Claim Has Been Denied

Skilled SSD attorneys representing clients throughout Maryland

If you are reading this, then you have likely already filed an initial claim with the Social Security Administration for Social Security Disability benefits, and you find yourself among the almost 70 percent of applicants who are denied benefits upon their initial application and must now file an appeal.

The skilled Baltimore Social Security Disability attorneys at Plaxen Adler Muncy, P.A. have more than 35 years of experience helping Marylanders like you obtain SSD benefits after having been denied initially. If you are too ill to work, you probably do not have the energy and stamina that it takes to gather all of the documentation and deal with the complexity at the SSA in order to appeal your disability ruling. We shoulder the burden of the legal legwork, and we fight for the benefits that you rightly deserve.

How do you appeal a SSA denial of a Social Security Disability benefits claim?

When you were notified of the denial of your initial application, the SSA sent a letter containing details that explain why they made their decision. You can look at those stated reasons and reassess your application strategy.

You can begin the appeals process by visiting the Social Security Administration website to upload the additional documents that you need to bolster your application. You have 60 days from the date of your denial to file an appeal.

How many levels of appeal are available?

  1. Reconsideration

The reconsideration process is a complete review of your claim by someone at the SSA that did not have any involvement in the first decision. They look at the evidence submitted with the first claim and any additional evidence supplied by the claimant. Unless the first analyst who reviewed the case made an error, the chances of getting approved in the reconsideration level are not much better than the initial application approval rates.

  1. Hearing before an Administrative Law Judge

If your claim is denied in the reconsideration stage, your next course of action is to request a hearing. An Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) will conduct a hearing to which you may bring witnesses and additional evidence to make your case more compelling. These hearings are usually held within 75 miles of your home, but they can also be conducted through a video teleconference. The hearing with the ALJ is your best opportunity to win your case, so it is advantageous for you to work with a Baltimore SSD attorney who can help you by preparing your case, interviewing witnesses and assembling convincing evidence.

  1. Review by the Appeals Council

The next step in the appeals process, if the decision of the ALJ was not favorable to you, is the Appeals Council. Whether the Appeals Council denies your request for review, reviews your case, or refers it back to another ALJ, you will be informed in writing and you will receive a copy of their decision. There are no hearings before the Appeals Council.

  1. Federal court review

If the council's decision is not favorable either, you have the final option of filing a lawsuit in a federal district court. You will receive a letter from the Social Security Administration about the decisions made by the Appeals Council, and what steps you must take in order to bring your case before a federal judge.

How a Social Security Disability attorney can help with your review

What if you feel so thoroughly frustrated upon receiving your denial letter that you do not know what to do next? You can retain the services of a Social Security Disability lawyer to represent you during the appeals process. There is no guarantee that hiring an attorney will ensure the success of your appeal, but depending on why your claim was denied, an experienced Baltimore SSD lawyer can develop a compelling case on your behalf and greatly improve your chances of getting your claim approved on appeal. A knowledgeable Maryland SSD attorney from Plaxen Adler Muncy, P.A. can review your case and give you their candid assessment of your chances of success.

Your SSD attorney takes cases on a contingency fee basis, so they get paid a portion of your back-pay benefits when your claim is successful. The SSA must approve their fees before they get paid. We do not get paid unless your claim is successful.

Schedule a free consultation with an experienced Social Security Disability attorney today

The process of obtaining benefits can be an arduous one, especially if you are trying to collect them without any help. We welcome the opportunity to speak to you about your Social Security Disability appeal. Call the Social Security Disability lawyers of Plaxen Adler Muncy, P.A. at 410-730-7737 or contact us to schedule a consultation today. We have office locations in Columbia, Baltimore and throughout Maryland.